Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Obama's Climate Plans Face Long Fight

akb Re:Paywall (229 comments)

To get around the WSJ paywall, search for the article title in Google. Open the link that comes up in Incognito and you should be fine.

about a year ago
top

Obama's Climate Plans Face Long Fight

akb Re:"may head off backlash" (229 comments)

I would like Obama to have done more on climate change, though I'm not sure what more he could have done.

Obama has gotten slaughtered politically for the environmental moves he has made. The green jobs that were part of the stimulus have cost him dearly, as have the much tightened auto emissions standards and the C02 limits for existing coal plants. All 3 of these are very substantial actions.

You may recall earlier in his first term a climate deal was near-ish happening. Subsequent to that the Tea Party happened, Obama list the House and the few Republican Senators that were working on that deal ran for cover.

about a year ago
top

Watch a Lockheed Martin Laser Destroy a Missile In Flight

akb Re:Aircraft carriers (177 comments)

This laser with its 1.5km range would be of little use against a maneuverable DF-21D traveling at Mach 10. SM3 is the missile being tapped to for that duty but the kill vehicle is not the big challenge.

about a year ago
top

Ask Slashdot: Building a Web App Scalable To Hundreds of Thousand of Users?

akb Azure (274 comments)

Sounds like you want a PaaS provider that doesn't lock you in to a platform. I have a similar problem to you (PHP not Java) and I rejected AppEngine for the same reason as you. To my surprise I am leaning towards Azure, Microsoft's cloud offering. Their website service allows you to write your web app in a few different frameworks without having to customize it for their platform and then only pay for what resources you use. Management is as simple as manipulating sliders to how many resources you are willing to devote to your app and are willing to pay for.

I have no interest in configuring VMs, configuring memcached, handling load balancing etc. My needs are simple, very basic PHP and Mysql. Traffic will probably start small but hopefully will spike big, but maybe it won't. Azure lets me handle this situation with a minimum of effort and expense. If they raise their prices or start to suck I can easily move my app since its simple PHP.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Clearly, the US is at fault here (275 comments)

Those are good examples, I hadn't thought about them. However, given the size of the US trade deficit and the contribution of manufactured goods to it I would be very surprised if adjusting for trade didn't raise US carbon emissions. I would love to read an article looking into it, so if you find one let me know.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Always (275 comments)

Unfortunately, I agree with you.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Clearly, the US is at fault here (275 comments)

This is an interesting discussion, thanks. I also liked the study you linked to, though I think it needs to be taken with a huge grain of salt. The article includes the service sector (because it is concerned with inflation), but we know that's the least energy intensive part of an economy, a point I made earlier. At 2/3 of the US economy readjusting for intensity is an enormous effect. The article further parses out how much of the other categories are actually expenses here in the US, this only magnifies the intensity importance.

The article is also concerned with personal expenditures. The emissions we were discussing would show up as industrial sector emissions, so I'm not sure how much overlap there is.

Also, you said "The sorts of things the US imports from China are not particularly energy intensive", I'm not sure I follow how you can say this. The US imports iPhones which may not be energy intensive itself but it also imports steel, tires, durable goods, etc from China which are extremely energy intensive to manufacture.

I would love to see some papers looking at how trade might adjust country emission numbers. I think its clear that the US's emissions would be adjusted upwards, though we disagree on how much that might be and perhaps the importance.

As for the point about carbon intensity, which is what I originally responded to you about, I think its clear that China's carbon intensity will go down substantially over time as their economy changes. A relatively larger service sector, a relatively smaller manufacturing sector and relatively less spending on infrastructure assure this to be the case. Whether they can reduce their intensity "enough" depends on their reducing the percentage of coal in their energy mix, whether this will happen is still an open question.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Always (275 comments)

Can't argue that its an extremely tough task to get such a treaty. Personally I think a fair treaty would be one in which the developed world cut its emissions and the developing world is allowed to grow a bit until they each converge at a roughly equal level sometime in the future.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Always (275 comments)

Outlaw, no. A global treaty that put a price on carbon emissions and took trade into account, that sounds about right.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Clearly, the US is at fault here (275 comments)

Thanks for the reasoned response, though I still don't think I agree with you. According to the World Bank manufacturing is 30% of China's GDP versus 13% for the US (source). Also, since the US is a big importer a lot of the carbon emissions for goods it consumes actually occur in China.

Finally, China is building at a rapid pace (though less rapid than at peak), this activity is very carbon intense. For instance in 2010 it produced just over half of all the world's cement. As its infrastructure matures emissions from this will level off while the rest of its economy grows, so intensity will again go down.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Always (275 comments)

Did you read the study abstract? Its a lot less sensationalist than the /. headline. It basically says this good thing is not as good as many are claiming because the coal is not staying in the ground. Do you disagree with that?

From a policy perspective it points to the need to take trade into account in global treaties on carbon emissions. This should apply both in energy exports (as in this case) and in manufacturing (ie, much of China's emissions are actually for goods the US consumes).

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Clearly, the US is at fault here (275 comments)

Certainly true, though don't forget the composition of the economies are very different. China's is manufacturing heavy because of low labor costs, hence more carbon intensity. The US economy is service heavy, sitting at desks is less carbon intense. As China's economy matures its manufacturing / service balance should change and labor costs will rise so carbon intensity should naturally drop to a degree. This is not to say that they shouldn't have incentives to invest in more efficient processes, this is why it is important that they are brought into an international agreement.

about a year and a half ago
top

As US Cleans Its Energy Mix, It Ships Coal Problems Overseas

akb Re:Clearly, the US is at fault here (275 comments)

The middle class in China still emit a fraction of the GHG per capita that the middle class in the US does. Not to mention that a large amount of China's GHG emissions are actually used in the production of goods for export.

There will need to be a real global treaty on GHG emissions under which the US will emit less per capita, China somewhat more per capita, and carbon content of trade will need to be factored in.

about a year and a half ago
top

US Near Bottom In Life Expectancy In Developed World

akb Re:Illegals and Gang Members (1063 comments)

"Americans fare worse than people in other countries even when the analysis is limited to non-Hispanic whites and people with relatively high incomes and health insurance, nonsmokers, or people who are not obese."

Please at least read the summary of the post.

about a year and a half ago
top

Data-Fed Monitoring System Will Put New Yorkers Under Police Surveillance

akb Re:Sad (259 comments)

non-violent whenever possible, violent when necessary. And yes, that's constitutionally protected free speech.

I was unaware that violence was Constitutionally protected speech. Please explain.

more than 2 years ago
top

Nature: Global Temperatures Are a Falling Trend

akb Re:Headline should say... (786 comments)

Rising sea levels don't mean that people look out their windows and see the water getting closer year by year and then, if they are smart, decide to move. I don't think the comment you're replying to put it very well referring to millions of drowned Bangladeshis but read the rest of the article you linked to. It talks about things like increased flood risks and loss of groundwater and arable land. It would take not very much of those things to have very severe consequences for Bangladesh, in the form of many killed and many more displaced and impoverished.

The "not smart enough" comment borders on the offensive. The severity of floods is often impacted by environmental changes, particularly by loss of habitat that soak up water (trees and wetlands), many point to this as a big impact in the Katrina floods. Are these type of flood victims not smart enough because they didn't project the increased risk from a change in their environment?

more than 2 years ago
top

Fossil Fuel Subsidies Dwarf Support For Renewables

akb Re:No Surprises Here (172 comments)

Before Gulf War I George HW Bush said that protecting Kuwait was in our vital national interest. What was that vital national interest? What is the vital national interest that had US troops in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, etc before 9/11?

We already only get a small amount of oil that is actually shipped from the Middle East. However, since oil is a global commodity interruption in the flow from any of the major exporters would have global consequences, as we've seen whenever there's been a hint of conflict in the Middle East.

more than 4 years ago
top

Free Software To Save Us From Social Networks

akb Free Software squandered first mover advantage (249 comments)

Free Software had first mover advantage over the big brother social network sites but it didn't innovate fast enough. Remember blogs? What happened? The community couldn't agree on standards for providing advanced social applications that people wanted, so the walled gardens sprang up that provided them. Seriously, remember the years of dumb ass bickering over RSS or Atom?

I personally am very sad that large parts of the social experience online are now within wall gardens, I see it as AOL's revenge from the grave. It says something about the limits of open processes that hopefully the Free Software movement and others can learn from.

more than 4 years ago

Submissions

akb hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

akb has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>